‘This a work of f(r)iction, where fact and fiction rub up against each other, and nobody wants to know it regardless.’
Review by Grady Harp
From the moment the cover for this book is studied and the credits are listed (Bob N. Boguslavski, author, George-Thérèse Dickenson, editor, Toten Creative, Translator, and Anouk Jansen and Cathy Angus-Healey, illustrators) the idea that this is full frontal farce is fairly obvious. Trying to piece together some sort of biographical data on the author Bob N. Boguslavski points out more comedy: he is (apparently) of Ukrainian Polish heritage, born in YUL (that’s the moniker for the Montreal-Trudeau airport) Canukistan (Soviet Caunukistan being the epithet for Canada) and now living in YVR (the Vancouver airport designator) raises an eyebrow. Apparently Bob (or Bobby Bo as his memoiresque book names him) has traveled from Canada thru the USA, UK, Egypt, Spain, India, The Netherlands and if this book has a trace of fact to it he has attended weddings in just about all of these places and more. ‘He enjoys being misunderstood in different languages he has butchered and warehousing inane information and factoids upstairs until Alzheimer’s or dementia sets in to make it all disappear.’
At any rate, Bob N. Boguslavski is funny – and his writing is hilarious, a bit naughty at times, a tad pungent, but the manner in which he gently mocks the concept of marriage and relationships and the general state of the world today supplies many hours of loud guffaws. The `chapters’ (or better yet `Chronicles’), sometimes in the form of formatted isolated stories and other times in the ether of emails, are each weddings, and each wedding its standardized by introductory listings by couple, date, location, place of ceremony and reception, number of guests, honeymoon, first dance, and playlist of music for the wedding. It is what happens on the way to, at, and the aftermath that keeps this little book singing with laughter. His play with words and languages entertains while poking a bit of fun at both sides of a conversation. And unexpectedly perhaps there is enough commentary about world events and differences of cultures and religions and just about every topic that can be parodied to make this more than just a travelogue of wedding parades.
At book’s end, Bobby Bo shares the following: `Kidding aside, deep down, my relationships have been like all my other life experiences: they immerse themselves into the mix like new ingredients in an ever-evolving simmering stew. They are combined with my ongoing exposure to the world’s ways, my deciphering of what the news media says supposedly happens out there, friendly advice (sometimes delivered with mixed messages), and crossed signals, all exerting their collective influence on me. I am–infiltrated by all, inculcated by none.’ This is a fine comedy writer who seems to be the type that will catch on with the public. Let’s see what comes up next.
Grady Harp, January 2014
TITLE: WEDDING CHRONICLES
AUTHOR: BOB N. BOGUSLAVSKI
PUBLISHER: AMAZON DIGITAL SERVICES